The Lurie Center is a multidisciplinary program designed to evaluate and treat children, adolescents and adults with a wide variety of conditions including autism, autism spectrum disorder, Asperger syndrome and developmental delays.
Parents of adults with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) often have many serious concerns about what the future holds for their children, even if they have carefully crafted an appropriate transition plan. ASD does not disappear at age 22. Adults on the spectrum continue to need supports and services, many of which are available now, though many more are needed. Individuals with ASD continue to learn and develop through the lifespan. Long term needs vary with the individual and often include appropriate housing, day program and/or employment options, social and life skills training and recreational opportunities, transportation, medical and mental health care.
The Department of Developmental Devices (DDS) and Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC) are the two main agencies providing supports and services to adults who have graduated or left the special education system. Adults with ASD may also be eligible for federal and state benefits such as Supplemental Security Income and MassHealth.
Since 2011, in Massachusetts the ARICA legislation (An Act Relative to Insurance Coverage for Autism) has created more options for adults with ASD because it has no age limit. Some adults with ASD who are covered under private insurance may be able to access medically necessary services such as in-home behavior programs (ABA), communication therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and social skills training. These services often require an evaluation and referral from a medical provider and can supplement therapies that the individual obtains through the state service agency.
For adults who may be interested in and able to participate in post secondary education, more programs are being developed to meet their needs. Many community or four year colleges offer appropriate programs for individuals with learning, cognitive and developmental disabilities including “bridge programs,” degree and certificate programs.